tv [untitled] December 10, 2012 11:00am-11:30am PST
big that they would be going to cuba and helping one person at a time and tonight, helping kick off the holiday season in san francisco, welcome, founder and executive director of the rainbow world fund, jeff cauter. >> thanks donna and that great introduction and i must say that you look particularly fabulous tonight. >> if you are not familiar with the rainbow world fund we are an international service agency based in the gay and lesbian and transgender and friends community. so we are gay and straight people coming together. and what we do is we work within our community to educate people about issues of humanitarian aid and world need.
and as we raise our community's consciousness, we fund and we raise funds to support relief efforts all around the world. our projects focus on, education, hunger, safe drinking water, and disaster relief, and all kinds of different ways of helping people. we have ongoing projects in cambodia, haiti, and south africa and helping out in areas just as the tsunami in south east asia and the earthquake and tsunami in japan and last year, and during hurricane katrina we tributed one mill object pounds of food aid. [ applause ] >> and all of that is coming from the lgbt and friends community. so we work as ambassadors for
our community and we help change people's minds and hearts about who we are and what we care about. besides providing humanitarian aid, we try to inspire hope in all of our projects and we have found that hope is really just as important as aid, if not more so. and we have worked with a lot of communities in desperate situations arounded world and we found that providing a little bit of humanitarian aid and a lot of courage and hope it is amazing that people in desperate circumstances can do to improve theirs life. so seven years ago we really have a feeling that in the united states, we really need to increase our hope also. and we decided to do that by creating a global art project, the world, tree of hope. and what you see behind you is
a live, 23-foot christmas tree and it is covered with 10,000 pieces of oragami and most of it is white cranes and all of the white cranes on the tree are inscribed with people's wish and hopes for the world. merilee put out an invitation that goes out virally through the internet and we ask people what they want for the future of the world and share it with us. and wishes are send in all over north america and europe and africa and really we have got wishes coming in from almost every country in the world now. and people are just expressing, all kinds of amazing hopes and dreams for the future of the world which is really encouraging for us. we create the tree as a symbol of the global unity and hope. and we are going to continue to add wishes to the tree all through the month of december. so we would love for you to go to our website which is rainbow
fund.org and it is free and we will printout your wish on a piece of paper and fold it into a crane and put it up on the tree. now, i want to thank, some key people who helped with this year's tree. first i want to start off with our core team, our core creative team and that consists of karin kai and linda mihara and thank you they have been working on the tree for seven years. >> and this year we have the help of dozens of volunteers and i want to particularly acknowledge the university of berkeley alfa, fi omega service community and volunteers from one brick. aid for good, the san francisco
chapter. and you guys are here. the bridgemen. the left coast theatre. skip and the staff of martini's bar. yeah. and berny man and we had a bunch of burners helping us this year. yeah. and also, of course i would like to thank the mayor's office of neighborhood services and city hall events department. we worked them for seven years and they are always wonderful. and so thank you. >> it was his idea in the beginning. he must be very proud. that is a beautiful tree. and there are hundreds of cranes, when you look at it from here, it looks like it is snow-covered the tree.
but you are in san francisco, that is not snow, those are oragami and each one has to be folded and it is an incredible project. i always thought of it as something that they just kind of did in class that you were bored, but no it is an art form and it makes a beautiful tree and behind all of that creativity is a person whose name was just mentioned. she has been here all seven years, linda mahara and she is a professional oragami artist. and you may know her work and not realize that you know her work. she has done professional training for febrese disney and pixar and she is here today because this is part of her labor of love, the world three of hope. let's welcome linda. mihara.
>> thank you, donna, that is a wonderful introduction and you do look magnificent. >> you too. >> thank you >> this is a labor of love. this is my 7th year of participation, i get a call one day from jeff cauter and he said that he had this concept for the tree and he had heard about the tree about sadakal and it is a famous story that was true that was the inspiration for this tree. i came on board because i am the professional oragami artist and the story of sadako goes in japan if you have a wish that you want to have come true, you fold 1,000 cranes, and by the time that you have finished your 1,000th crane your wish will be granted so during the hiroshima bombing a girl became ill and had will leukemia, she
passed before she finished, however her school mates completed the rest of the 1,000 that are buried with her. there is a monument to her at iroshima peace park. >> the celebrating of the cranes is celebrated worldwide. and this as an inspiration for this tree and how do we go about doing this? it is a big undertaking. we have so many volunteers, over the years, we have bridged the japanese and american community with the lgbt community and the chinese community and hispanic and it is really has been a community effort from the city. and it has been an amazing project. each crane takes about 30 folds
to create. and we have over 10,000 ornaments on this tree this year and this year's tree is 23 feet tall, and it is four and a half feet taller than the white house tree. and it is the world's largest oragami tree. [ applause ] and it took 250 volunteers to prep the models everything has to be hand folded and wired and fire proofed and then, of course, decorated or placed on to the tree. it is really an amazing thing to look up close and think about what your hope and wishes
for the world. we have given all the wishes wings and we hope that all of the wishes come true, especially the wishes of the children, thank you very much. anybody else just get chills? it gives so much more meaning to the tree. wow that is a lot of hours and i am not good at math but i think that it is a lot of hours, i can't imagine. and you have to love what you are doing. one more hand for linda and she does a wonderful job. it is really do get wishes from all over the world and we love to read some of them. we are going to have two people come up and read. but before they do, we got a late wish and just came across on beautiful stationary and we cannot fold it because it is on nancy pilosi sent us this message, each person puts in their wish for the world for the year and this is so well
worded and if you know nancy it rings true. >> my wish is to live in a society where marriage equality is a reality for all and where all-american families are treated with dignity, and equality. [ applause ] the next two speakers are coming up together. we have a little school girl and a supervisor of san francisco, i bet that you will be able to tell which one is which. >> the 10-year-old girl is the president of her class at her elementary school and the larger person is a member of the board of supervisors. >> hang on hannah oconnel and scott weiner. [ applause ] >> so i am not hannah.
i will be reading wishes tonight and alternate. the first is from sisters in gramic of the sisters of loreto my wish is that we achieve marriage equality in every state and we resend doma on the federal level to achieve full quality for lesbian and gay relationships across the land. >> i wish that the bees were not dying from. >> that is a good one. >> my hope is for improved economic conditions for my country's most vulnerable people that we create healthy environments and green spaces and by country men and women become fully conscious of their
ability to change things for the better. >> baptist from haiti. my wish is for more justice, economic as well as social justice, starting with the recognition that poverty is not a sin. >> i wish for wish for a world without boarders and walls, age 53, argentina. [ applause ] >> i wish for a world where the children are more just and more kind and fair in the world than
the one we know. president, barack obama. >> and now, this is a good one, that donna and i can very strongly identify with. i wish that male fashion designers would be forced to wear the things that they create for women like stelleto heals and it gets better. and that all politicians would have to live by the rules and laws they come up with for the rest of us like the ones on food stamps and the minimum wage by isabel, ienda >> i promise that i will not take my clothes off in public. >> i wish it would snow in the morning so nobody does not have to go to school for two weeks, michael age 13 from long
island, new york. >> free medical care for everyone, dorothy, age 72, new york, new york. >> i wish for all of the lonely people in the world to find happiness. daniel, steele, the author. >> i wish that we could bring all of our soldiers home now, anonomous. >> thank you, everyone. >> you can't make that stuff up, i tell you that was incredible, i know when the mayor leaves town they appoint a mayor for the day and i think that hannah should be the supervisor for the day when scott is out of town, thank you, hannah. >> okay, if you are following
your program, throw it away or take it home with you so you know who was here today but he always have to change things around a little bit. i am thrilled that we have the mayor with us and we have the council general of japan with us and i want to bring them on so they can do the official thing that they have done for several years and exchange oragami decorations and kind of a symbolic friendship act here in city hall and don't forget that san francisco is where the united nations is was founded. one more thing that was very interesting to me this year the council general's wife coordinated the gathering of wishes for the tree of hope for 40 other consulates around the globe. >> thank you for doing that. the mayor of san francisco, the council general of japan and his name is... wait a minute, i have it.
his name is heroshi, imamata. >> happy holidays everyone, welcome to the great city of san francisco, that dress, donna will make santa claus stay up all night. any way, i want to welcome everybody again to city hall, and to view our wonderful, wonderful tree of hope. it is something that i enjoy every year that it has been here and i tell you when it was announced that this was the tallest, largest tree of hope in the united states, if not in the world, i also wanted to say my very first thought was san francisco has always the
biggest hearts in the world, thanks to all of you. thank you, donna, for your wonderful mc work here every year. and your beautiful presence. jeff carter, thank you very much, congratulations and thank you on behalf of everyone in the city, we are so proud of your work. karin that i have known for 30 years, thank you for you and all of the volunteers from the rainbow fund to put this together to place all of these 10,000 ornaments on the tree to give us the kind of attention that we would like not just because we have a great tree or city hall, but because we do always want to show our hearts first, especially during these holiday season. i know that is why, all of you are here tonight. and i want to also give a shout out to isabel iunda, thank you very much for being here,
isabel. and linda mahara, thank you for your wonderful presentation, you know the stories that linda tells every year that updates us. these are the stories that i am proud of. because for every story that she has told about the original, the origin of origami, we inherit those stories and spread them to generations of our friends and children and so they understand what hope is about. >> halahanzo, and our san francisco, polorio. thank you for being here tonight. i also know that veronica klaus, thank you for being here. sisters, i was going to say the sisters of petulince. thank you for being here as well. [ applause ] and of course, you will hear and you have heard them earlier, our san francisco boys
chorus, thank you, boys chorus for being here to celebrate. and then, tonight, many of you will be treated to goodies and some refreshments all donated through the world fund and their volunteers and all of the small businesses of san francisco. thank you for your wonderful donations during these holidays. said earlier, the tree of hope is our symbol of tolerance and acceptance. and i know what is on my mind, hopefully by the end of this week is that we will see more than this symbol. we will see the wishes, that this tree represents for all of us. and that will make this world, with our own decisions, with our own hands, more acceptance, more tolerance, as we wait with great anxiousness on our u.s. supreme court to exhibit their tolerance in our united states for the same-sex marriage that we all deserve.
[ applause ] i also wanted to again, acknowledge that this is the season of giving, and hope that you will join us from now to the end of january, and a donation in the city hall when you have to visit, we have canisters for those who need food for this season, also if you would join us in the weekend of december 15th and 16th, we are going to have family orientation outside with snow day here in city hall. we are bringing snow in again. and we are going to enjoy this with our snow day, december 15th and 16th, you are all welcome to come and bring the kids and all of the extended families. and if i may say again, these holidays and what the tree
represent is the best hope and wishes. the holidays should never be about ourselves. what reminds us and what this tree will continue doing, is that you have to remember others that are less fortunate, and share our hearts and our minds and our resources with them. and it is just like japan, for what they have done. if you read the papers recently, you know, that japan suffered a very harsh earthquake and tsunami a while back. and they could have easily said, that we are victims of a national disaster. but, when the country heard that the debris was crossing international lines, all the way to the west coast, and they did not claim victim. they also said, we could help. and that is why we heard the news of japan donating $5 million to help the west coast
also deal with the debris. that is a wonderful, wonderful gesture of humanitarian work. and so it is my honor tonight, that i stand here with council general inamata welcoming him and the symbol of his country and knowing the origins of the origami and knowing that we have his blessing and his country's blessing, and working with us to make the world better. and create more peace to create tolerance and acceptance for everyone and that this will always improve the quality of life for everyone on this planet. and so, it is with that, that i welcome mr. inamata and the council general of japan here to say a few words before we exchange our blessings to each other as cities and as countries trying to help the
world improve. council general >> thank you, mayor, thank you. >> well, good evening, it is my great pleasure to be here, this is the 7th, and the world annual world tree of hope celebrations, here at city hall. and the rainbow world fun and mayor lee. and the san francisco japanese-american community. all arranging this ceremony. this is actually my third time to be here to stage, to say a few words. the first time it was three years ago. and we celebrated the world champions of san francisco giants. and this year, as well. we have many things to celebrate, many things to
cherish. including the second time in three years but at the same time, there are lots likes natural disasters. >> in 20 months, have passed since the tsunami in japan. and the theme of tonight, celebration has been one of the essential components of japan's role of habitation and construction. the open of the japanese people and the support of the
international community has given our survival. japan is still on its way to recovery. but i wish once again, to thank you for your continued friendship and compassion. thank you very much. [ applause ] , thank you. >> our celebration tonight, demonstrates our community's dedication to this hope for world peace. love, acceptance, and and i hope that we will continue to create a trusting legacy, lasting legacy here in san francisco city hall. as linda mentioned and also the mayor lee said that this is the
largest tree of origami so what a beautiful tree we have. for each crane on the tree contains a wish from all over the world. i am optimistic that our hope will grow just like this tree. may we make these wishes come true by allowing the cranes to fly towards their hopes and dreams. thank you, thank you very much and now i would like to exchange cranes with mayor. >> let's hear it for them.
>> i see the crowd goes every year for this event and it grows in size and diversity and you are all welcome here and the mayor would reflect those words as well. he loves seeing this diversity and we were laughing at a minute ago what a wonderful thing to have in city hall right here, one person that we forgotten to mention and a lot of this is in our program, take it home, but the tree was donated from the delancy street foundation, get your tree from them. i always try to keep an eye out for an elected officials i did see the fire chief walk in and joanne is here. thank you for being here. and now we are going to go back to our regular program because we have several people who have wishes who have spoken words they want to give to you that kind of express their take on the tree of hope. first of all, mention once
before but now hear to speak to you alahandro mahe and teaches at the san francisco university and short story edit tore and award winner and here he is. >> thank you. >> you look fabulous. you remind me of my first girlfriend. only she was not as tall. but, i want to thank the mayor lee, and the mayor's office, and jeff, and world rainbow fund and all of you for the invitation to be here tonight. we are so privileged to be able to gather together in community and joy and celebration and hope while so much of the world is plunged in darkness and chaos and war and intolerance. i am honored to read a poem